UFC middleweight titleholder Israel Adesanya did not injure his hand in the UFC 271 main event last Sat. night (Feb. 12) in Houston, Texas. He simply couldn’t get the right offense going against former champion Robert Whittaker, who fought valiantly in their pay-per-view (PPV) rematch.
Watch the video highlights here.
The fact Adesanya escaped without damage is probably going to force a lot of “experts” to delete their tweets from last weekend. Particularly those praising UFC color commentator Joe Rogan for the text he sent UFC play-by-play man Jon Anik — mid fight — to suggest “The Last Stylebender” broke his right hand.
Here’s a sample:
If you put “Adesanya Hand” into Twitter search you’ll see some truly embarrassing takes.
So was the champ injured?
“No, not at all,” coach Eugene Bareman told The MMA Hour. “That was actually something I addressed as early as round two, I was trying to get that right hand going. For whatever reason Robert was making Israel a little anxious to throw — not just the right hand — but the right side, so I wasn’t able to get the right side in terms of the upper body moving the way I should. There was a block there that I tried to mitigate my way through each round but for whatever reason me and him weren't able to successfully get that right hand going the way we wanted to, so it wasn’t about a broken hand or anything, it was [mental].”
Adesanya also debunked the injury theory at the UFC 271 post-fight press conference.
Rogan was not at the commentary desk for last weekend’s “Adesanya vs. Whittaker” card and early talk pointed to a “scheduling conflict.” UFC President Dana White, however, called those reports “bullshit” and said Rogan simply wanted the night off.
Perhaps to put some space between him and this recent controversy.